A recently completed project in Youbou has brought a new groundwater source online and improved the quality of drinking water for residents without additional cost.
Historically, the community of Youbou has relied on surface water as the source of its potable drinking water.
In order to meet the provincial drinking water protection regulation, the community would have been required to upgrade the existing treatment facility or construct a new one at a substantial cost to residents.
With the construction of a new well, the Cowichan Valley Regional District was able to utilize gas tax funding and system reserve funds to cover the costs of associated works and bring a new groundwater system online in the fall of 2020.
“The surface water quality in Youbou has always been sufficient, but with high turbidity during the winter months, the old water filtration system was really not up to par,” said Todd Etherington, utility operations superintendent for the CVRD.
“We were fortunate to have this high quality, high yield groundwater source that will meet the needs of the community for years to come.”
When tested over the summer, the new well produced 15 litres per second without any fluctuation to the level of water in the well.
The new water source also means there is much less chlorine treatment required than in the past.
Three new diesel generators were also purchased and distributed within the water distribution system, ensuring that the system will continue to operate during any future power outages.
“If we did not have this new well and were forced to build a water treatment plant that complied with provincial standards for surface water, it would have cost millions of dollars,” said Klaus Kuhn, the CVRD’s director for Youbou.
“I’m really proud of our team and the expertise we have in our utilities group at the CVRD, and I want to thank them on behalf of all Youbou residents for creating this sustainable solution.”
The budget for the project was $305,000, and with the in-house expertise of utilities staff, it was completed for approximately $260,000.
The remainder of the funding will be reserved for an upcoming watermain upgrade project in Youbou.